Chapter 30: “Esther’s Narrative”
Summary: Allan Woodcourt’s mom visits Jarndyce for a while, and Esther experiences mixed emotions from her. Her son must only marry someone from an old family and she hopes that he’ll find someone while he’s abroad. (She hints that he’s a bit of a player of women and makes every one he meets fall in love with him.) She encourages Esther to find a husband and make a life for herself. Then Caddy visits and announces her upcoming marriage. Esther and company help her prepare. There’s a strange wedding, but all of Esther’s friends/guardian claim nothing can be unpleasant so long as Esther is there.
Reaction: The end was very sweet. Esther seems like a wonderful person. She is such a feelings denier, though. Clearly she is in love with Woodcourt but is unable to admit it. She wants to like Mrs. Woodcourt, but that woman does everything she can to keep Esther away from her son. I wonder what she’d think if she knew the truth about Esther’s background. Though does that fact that she’s illegitimate make it worse for her or better? Not sure.
Prediction: I’m sure all those women with missions are not out of the picture yet, even if Caddy was able to escape them (only to move on to serve a fake prince). When the truth about Esther does come out, I wonder what the reaction among all these people will be–especially the Woodcourts. I would like Allan Woodcourt to be in it some more and if he’s the true love interest, I’d like him to fall in love with Esther before knowing her true background.
Why This Book Is a Classic: Classic wedding. The dress was hand made (very cool), and everything pretty much took place at the bride’s family’s house. It was simple (not too romantic, though), and probably cheap. Honestly, if I ever get married that’s more the way I’d like to go (without the missions ladies, though–and no way would I marry anyone like Prince Turveydrop).
Our Lesson: A happy marriage is possible–if your definition of happy is living in your father/father-in-law’s attic and waiting on him hand and foot while keeping house and running his business.